Post Number: 1647
|Posted on Thursday, May 29, 2008 - 8:35 pm: || |
I can't believe this wasn't posted yet.
Sen. Majority Leader Mike Bishop and House Speaker Andy Dillon each said during a panel discussion Thursday they will back a plan by billionaires Dan Gilbert and Roger Penske to construct a privately funded $103 million light rail loop on Detroit’s Woodward Avenue.
http://crainsdetroit.com/apps/ pbcs.dll/article?AID=/20080529 /REG/298468638/1069/legislator s-gilbert-penske-will-back-lig ht-rail-on-woodward
Post Number: 123
|Posted on Thursday, May 29, 2008 - 9:31 pm: || |
I applaud them.....This is exactly what will happen if Detroit leaders will stop sitting on there ass and do something. Dont sit back and wait til somebody else make a move. Get the ball rolling before you get left behind. You will see more support soon from City leaders...everybody wants to jump on the band wagon and thats what I'm trying to do myself.
Post Number: 1754
|Posted on Thursday, May 29, 2008 - 9:35 pm: || |
Does this also mean that Dan Gilbert is favoring the old Hudson's location on Woodward?
Post Number: 125
|Posted on Thursday, May 29, 2008 - 9:48 pm: || |
I believe so....as well statler site and the Grand Circus Park area" Like what Compuware Corp. did for the area and the major transformation that occured there due to there presence Downtown.Also considering a surface parking lot on Broadway and maybe a collaboration project with the top business leaders downtown to build Luxury Housing and major retail or maybe considering renovating some of Detroit's skyscrapers as residential such as The Lafeyette Towers, The David Whitney building and other buildings around the downtown area.
Post Number: 144
|Posted on Thursday, May 29, 2008 - 9:54 pm: || |
Since this "loop" seems to be going between Hart Plaza and Grand Blvd, wouldn't that interfere with DTOGS plan? Wouldn't is make more sense of just connecting where DTOGS LT starts at Foxtown/CoPa all the way down to Jefferson? But if there is funding, great news!
Post Number: 505
|Posted on Thursday, May 29, 2008 - 9:56 pm: || |
I agree, it would be nice if they either joined forces, or if they did a line that would be complementary to the other one.
Post Number: 126
|Posted on Thursday, May 29, 2008 - 9:57 pm: || |
Post Number: 541
|Posted on Thursday, May 29, 2008 - 11:44 pm: || |
Privately funded for construction, not operation, if you go by the article. Are we going to see a return to the old days of the street railways where the companies had broad powers to condemn and acquire property? I can't see how the $100 million project gets funded without some spin-off of related development that directly benefits those funding the project.
Post Number: 2243
|Posted on Friday, May 30, 2008 - 12:18 am: || |
People like them need to run for Mayor.
Too bad they don't meet the qualifications.
Post Number: 4834
|Posted on Friday, May 30, 2008 - 12:24 am: || |
Sounds like one rail system from Hart Plaza to Eight Mile should be built...Penske/Gilbert can handle the portion out to Grand Blvd., and the City and their funding sources can handle the rest.
It seems obvious. Oh how I hope this is what they will agree on without wasting any time.
And what is this "high speed" commuter rail for Detroit-Ann Arbor they speak of? Are we putting Acela trains on those tracks or what?(that is America's only high-speed rail)
Some friends and I were speaking about long-term plans and the future of this region. My big point was that some big moves need to happen to really change the complexion of this region (hinting at massive investment in transit)...this seems to be one of those major events that are a 'sine qua non' for saving this region.
Post Number: 1330
|Posted on Friday, May 30, 2008 - 12:40 am: || |
1. With regard to Woodward, I agree with you.
2. "High speed" is not correct; the commuter rail will operate at normal Amtrak speeds. They aren't talking about building entirely separate track (yet), and that's all the current track can handle. Figure about 1:10 from Detroit to AA.
Gilbert himself has said (paraphrasing) that without trains the region has no future, so you and your friends are (warning: horrible pun) on the right track.
Post Number: 16
|Posted on Friday, May 30, 2008 - 12:48 am: || |
Yea, it seems that many articles, when referring to the Detroit-AA commuter rail, call the proposed service "high speed". The Professor is correct though. It actually isn't. However, maybe years and years in the future, the tracks between Detroit & AA and beyond will be 90+mph like those in West Michigan. Add in new stations in Ypsi and Wayne/Westland and the new connection in West Detroit and the Detroit-AA corridor run could probably take 45-50 minutes.
Post Number: 17
|Posted on Friday, May 30, 2008 - 1:23 am: || |
Also, I am just curious. When the trolleys/light rail ran down Woodward, what was the cost to ride back when they were last used 50 or so years ago?
Post Number: 4406
|Posted on Friday, May 30, 2008 - 1:35 am: || |
Yea, it seems that many articles, when referring to the Detroit-AA commuter rail, call the proposed service "high speed". The Professor is correct though. It actually isn't.
For Michigan, the trains will be "high speed" when compared to a DDOT or SMART bus.
Commuter trains typically don't travel at the speeds Amtrak does, with a couple exceptions. All of those exceptions are on the electrically-powered, Amtrak-owned Northeast Corridor. Just trying to make sure no one gets their hopes up too high (although ANY commuter trains in Michigan are an improvement!).
Post Number: 340
|Posted on Friday, May 30, 2008 - 9:05 am: || |
Novine- I wouldn't be concerned about the "private right to condemn." Prop 4 specifically bans government entities from using eminent domain to transfer land to a private entity for purposes of economic redevelopment. You can condemn property for public use, like parks or civic buildings, but:
Quote: “Public use” does not include the taking of private property for transfer to a private entity for the purpose of economic development or enhancement of tax revenues.
Legal opinion? You can probably condemn for building public transit, provided it's at least a quasi-public entity that's running it. The hitch? You can't just say "the area of Calvert from parcel X to Y is condemned." You have to pay out at least 125% of FMV to the owner of each individual property and it requires direct negotiation with individual. If you try to back door it and just "blight" the property or its surrounding area, you still can't do it like they did in Poletown. Detroit would have to prove each individual plot is without a doubt blighted (what that means is kind of anyone's guess), probably in separate proceedings. HUGE time overhead and use of court resources.
The point's kind of moot because almost all of the required structures are on the public right of way anyway. The only thing you might have to condemn for is building a service depot somewhere along the line. However, it's pretty clear that even if the city wanted to let private companies have all sorts of land for cheap along the corridor, the Michigan Constitution pretty clearly prevents them from doing it. I can't imagine they'd even try.
Post Number: 1071
|Posted on Friday, May 30, 2008 - 9:33 am: || |
Hope we can see this in our lifetimes. It is an exciting idea and I hope it doesn't get bogged down.
Post Number: 542
|Posted on Friday, May 30, 2008 - 10:22 am: || |
My question is how does this thing get financed? I can't imagine someone's sitting on $100 million that just gets dropped into building the new rail line. I'm assuming that there's an expectation of spin-off development to recoup the costs long-term.
Post Number: 862
|Posted on Friday, May 30, 2008 - 10:29 am: || |
Well, if you set it up in the right way, $100m between those folks is entirely possible; I, if I were in their position, would go raise another $100m for an endowment to help run it; and it can all be a tax write-down.
And it's an investment in their future, as well in being able to attract talent for less money (as right now, you need to pay a premium to get people to come here from out of state); not to mention, when you get to be as rich as these people are, it's not longer about money it's about emotion and reputation.
Post Number: 86
|Posted on Friday, May 30, 2008 - 10:30 am: || |
12 stops in 3.4 miles is kind of a lot -- one stop every .28 miles. Often urban planners try to place things within a 1/4 mile walk of a node point, but with roughly 1/4 mile stops, this places the nearest stop no more than 1/8 of a mile away once one is on Woodward. It seems to be that slightly fewer stops and faster service would be more beneficial, especially if the system is expanded. I've felt, for example, that the People Mover would be far more useful with double the track length but the same number of stops.
Post Number: 545
|Posted on Friday, May 30, 2008 - 10:31 am: || |
"Secrecy by the project’s organizers has been fueled in part because of fears of political squabbling that has shelved transit projects in the past."
Funny how the people you elected can't get anything done and people from the private sector have to step in. John Hertel sounds clueless as to what is happening.
Post Number: 543
|Posted on Friday, May 30, 2008 - 10:36 am: || |
Why is that surprising? Someone like Penske doesn't have to report to anyone but himself. Elected officials have to be accountable to the voters and as much as someone like Kwame seems unaccountable, most elected officials are finely attuned to what their constituents do and don't want.
Post Number: 164
|Posted on Friday, May 30, 2008 - 10:40 am: || |
Novine: "most elected officials are finely attuned to what their constituents do and don't want."
That is the funniest thing I've read all day. It should read "most elected officials are finely attuned to what elected officials do and don't want."
As for the Penske "Plan"...are we really talking about two different modes running down Woodward? This is where the problem is going to start - two groups, two separate plans. Recipe for disaster.
Post Number: 544
|Posted on Friday, May 30, 2008 - 1:18 pm: || |
It should read "most elected officials are finely attuned to what elected officials do and don't want."
Those two statements aren't mutually exclusive. Most politicians who serve more than one term are those that meet the expectations of the people who vote. It may include pandering, pocket lining and all other things that the average voter claims to hate but if they perceive that their elected official is looking out for THE VOTER, they'll continue to elect them to office.
Post Number: 1735
|Posted on Friday, May 30, 2008 - 2:02 pm: || |
Penske for mayor and Gilbert for deputy mayor lol.
Post Number: 421
|Posted on Friday, May 30, 2008 - 3:36 pm: || |
The Big Three pale in comparison to the Big 4 on influence in changing Detroit. All hail the Big 4 (in no particular order)
1. Peter Karmanos
2. Mike Ilitch
3. Dan Gilbert
4. Roger Penske
(Message edited by mdoyle on May 30, 2008)
Post Number: 269
|Posted on Friday, May 30, 2008 - 3:40 pm: || |
This sounds promising! An expansion of mass transit in Detroit that has a chance of succeeding.
As for having several overlapping, independently run rail systems in Detroit, I don’t really see the problem. A confusing system would be heaps better than what the city has now, which isn't much.
Post Number: 663
|Posted on Friday, May 30, 2008 - 7:34 pm: || |
I would like to see Detroit commission an arthitect(like Daniel Burnam did for Chicago) to design a "Master Plan" for a transit system for all of Metro Detroit.
If Detroit starts with the small loop and later expands, it should have no problem if it sticks to a formal master plan.
What I don't want to see is two different transit systems; get on the red line downtown (Woodward line as an example) and pay 2 dollars then have to get off at eight mile and transfer to the pink line (Woodward Ave north) to continue north.
Post Number: 446
|Posted on Saturday, May 31, 2008 - 7:30 am: || |
This is what I hate!
People complain about stuff that is not even built yet. I would rather have two lines then what transit we have today!
Post Number: 2247
|Posted on Saturday, May 31, 2008 - 8:15 am: || |
Detroit313, yeah, that sounds good.
I thought our grid was designed around the streetcar in the first place.
In addition, we have one plus most cities don't have. All the streets end at the "supposed" center of commerce. so that's a start.
Post Number: 82
|Posted on Monday, June 02, 2008 - 8:16 pm: || |
I thought the DTOGS plan needed to raise 100 million in local funding in order to get the fed to fund the rest. Why are these private backers not supporting an already well established transit plan? That would be enough to build the whole thing. We already have a service that makes 25 stops between Hart Plaza and Grand Blvd. Its called the 53 Woodward bus. The Woodward Transit Catalyst Project is a people moverish idea to provide mass transit to those who don't really need it. I can already hear the hammer pounding the nails into this one.
Post Number: 231
|Posted on Tuesday, June 03, 2008 - 2:05 am: || |
I agree, a master plan is really needed. For instance, if the Woodward line is to be extended up Woodward one day, why are Birmingham and Troy building a transit center a half-mile away? That could force an alteration in the route where there otherwise perhaps shouldn't be one.. these various plans need to be put together into one cohesive master plan.
Post Number: 66
|Posted on Tuesday, June 03, 2008 - 11:25 am: || |
These guys really need to get behind the DTOGS proposal, in my opinion, because that plan is already intended as the first piece of a larger, regional mass transit project. I also think that DTOGS would do a better job of linking to the Rosa Parks Transit Center, the People Mover, the New Center Amtrak station/Detroit-Ann Arbor commuter rail, and Oakland County (since it is supposed to go all the way to the State Fairgrounds instead of stopping at Grand Blvd). It also has the potential to connect to future lines along Gratiot and Michigan Ave. DTOGS sounds like the real deal to me; the Gilbert/Penske idea sounds kind of halfassed and, to quote Russix, "people moverish."
My question is, why are Gilbert and Penske even making statements like this to the press? Surely they know about DTOGS. They should be backing that and waving cash around to speed that project up instead of trying to compete with it.
Post Number: 166
|Posted on Tuesday, June 03, 2008 - 11:49 am: || |
If the Penske plan is just another (larger) looped, single direction, people mover, that would be a huge waste and bigger mistake.
That type of system just does not work. I agree with Russix, join up with the plan from DTOGS. We don't need a second People Mover.
As for those who think two systems are better than one...I don't get that. If you're starting from scratch here, which we are, do it right. Don't throw together a hodge-podge of systems just because. Isn't it that sort of thinking that landed Detroit in this situation in the first place?
Heck, maybe by pooling resources (both financially and politically), the DTOGS Woodward line can be built along with another, albeit shorter line up Michigan Ave. or Gratiot.
Two light rail systems (coupled with two already existing bus systems) would be a monumental mistake.
(Message edited by gotdetroit on June 03, 2008)